Employees and conflicts of interest

Do you have an employee who owns a business offering similar services to your business? Or maybe one of your employees has accepted a gift from one of your clients?

Depending on your policy, either of these examples could be classified as a conflict of interest.

What’s considered a conflict of interest?

A conflict of interest can arise when an employees’ interests conflict with the professional interests of a business, or an employee stands to make a personal gain from the business.

A few example situations could be:

  • an employee starts a part-time business offering similar services
  • an employee accepts a gift from a supplier in exchange for business over other suppliers
  • a manager fails to disclose that they are related to a candidate being considered for a job.

Even just the perception of a conflict of interest can be damaging to your business’s reputation. Without a disclosure process, it can create gossip in the workplace and harm staff morale.

Does your business have a code of conduct?

A code of conduct is a set of guidelines that spells out:

  • the standards and values that reflect the culture and beliefs of your business
  • how employees, customers, partners and suppliers can expect to be treated
  • what you as the business owner expect of your employees.

Making these guidelines clear can help eliminate conflicts of interest in your business.

What to do:

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